UN, EU push to harness refugees’ entrepreneurial talent

Three articles in the Financial Times’ special report on ‘Understanding Entrepreneurs’ feature the Centre’s research. In the first article of the series, the FT interviews Faith Gakanje, who was one of four case studies in our report on refugee entrepreneurship.

Faith Gakanje had an interior design business and comfortable lifestyle before she was forced to flee Zimbabwe because of her opposition to the then prime minister Robert Mugabe. Arriving in the UK in 2002, she was packed into the back of a van and dumped in a shared room in a house in Nottingham, in the middle of the country.

“I was not allowed to work. It made me feel awful,” she says. As an asylum seeker she was given £31 a week and moved house seven times in nine years before the government recognised her right to stay. As an opponent of the Mugabe regime, she says she feared for her life.

She now runs her own clothing company and mentors other migrants as they start their own ventures.

Read the full article here